Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Bernie Sanders is Running for President

It became apparent a couple of months into Trump's administration that Bernie Sanders was positioning himself for another presidential run, confirmation of which is received today in the form of an opinion piece in The New York Times, "Bernie Sanders: How Democrats Can Stop Losing Elections," a reworked stump speech from the 2016 campaign. Gone is any critique of the U.S. policy of perpetual war. Sanders has learned from Trump that even the mildest questioning of the national security state is rewarded with an "enemy of the people" label.

The NYT has published two stories in the last few days -- Monday's "Democrats in Split-Screen: The Base Wants It All. The Party Wants to Win," by Alexander Burns and Jonathan Martin, and today's "Is Bernie Sanders, 75, Too Old for 2020? His Fiercest Fans Say No," by Yamiche Alcindor -- that illustrate the unresolved Democratic Party split between leadership and rank'n'file.

The split will be resolved when Sanders takes control of the party like Corbyn took control of Labour. It is going to be more difficult for Sanders because the Democratic Party is not democratic, not nearly as democratic as the Labour Party. 

Democratic Party leaders could still decide, as they did last year, to back a losing candidate who will not upturn the plutocratic apple cart; if so, there is no telling how deep the damage will be. The current state of the French Socialist Party comes to mind.

The difficulty for Democratic Party power brokers is that there is no one on the scene who can challenge Bernie Sanders -- except for Senator Elizabeth Warren. If Warren were to shoulder the burden, it would likely be a suicide mission. Her reputation (consider the irony of Elizabeth Warren accepting donations from Goldman Sachs) would be scarred beyond rehabilitation and the party would be further fractured. I doubt a young champion like Emmanuel Macron will materialize out of the mist for the Wall Street Democrats.

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